Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching

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Work with diverse learners

With Massey’s Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching you can develop your interest in specialist teaching.

What is it like?

The Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching gives you advanced theoretical and research-based study of specialist teaching.

This programme adopts an enquiry-based inter-professional education approach using a range of blended learning options for all students regardless of location.

There are seven specialist endorsement areas:

  • Learning and Behaviour (offered by both Massey University and University of Canterbury)
  • Autism Spectrum Disorder (offered by Massey University)
  • Blind and Low Vision (offered by Massey University)
  • Complex Educational Needs (offered by Massey University and University of Canterbury)
  • Gifted and Talented (offered by Massey University)
  • Deaf and Hearing Impairment (offered by University of Canterbury)
  • Early Intervention (offered by University of Canterbury)

The Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching has four compulsory courses: core theory and foundations; specialist theory and foundations; evidence-based practice; and a practicum. The inter-professional approach allows specialist teachers in inclusive education to learn with, from and about each other within a community of practice.

Massey is ranked in the world’s top 150 universities for education in the Quacquarelli Symonds (QS) ranking.

Your qualification options

Please note that the Postgraduate Diploma in Specialist Teaching does not qualify you to be a teacher in New Zealand. If you want to be a teacher, you will also need to take a postgraduate teaching qualification. Please explore your options in our education pathways tool.

A good fit if you:

  • Have a passion for inclusive education
  • Are comfortable with an enquiry-based inter-professional model
  • Can study part-time in block and distance modes
June Chiaroni
PGDipSpecialist Teaching
Works with senior students in a Catholic School in Perth, WA

“I have a lot more confidence in my own ability…”

I was born and raised in South Africa during Apartheid. I was lucky enough to be able to attend a private secondary school, and so could gain an education of the kind denied to most black students during this time. I believe the experiences of growing up during this time contributed to my desire to ensure everyone in our society has the opportunity to gain a quality education.

I moved to Aotearoa New Zealand as a qualified teacher, with seven years’ experience in a range of schools in both South Africa and the United Kingdom.

Currently I am based in Perth, WA, working with senior students in a unit attached to a Catholic School, John XXIII. The students I work with have a range of disabilities and learning difficulties.

I decided to undertake the PGDipSpecialist Teaching as I knew that I wanted to work in the field of special needs. However, I felt that I did not have sufficient knowledge of my chosen field. It was important to learn more and find ways in which I could better support the students in my care.

I wanted to obtain a qualification in special teaching needs as I believed this would add an important academic dimension to my existing applied teaching skills. By engaging in this course I felt that the studies I undertook would assit me in unlocking the full potential of the studentsts I have the privilege of working with.

I feel a definite sense of achievement having completed the course. In the last few years I have not only grown in my field as a Special Needs teacher, but I have developed a determination to become better and continue to provide my students with learning opportunities and experiences that will best prepare them for the future.

By the end of the programme I was putting a lot of what I had learned into practice, and definitely felt I had grown as an educator. In addition the course prompted me to undertake a great deal of research into methods and approaches that I would likely not have come across without it, and gave me the tools to critically evaluate new approaches and evidence of their efficacy to help determine the potential value to my students. I have a lot more confidence in my own ability, and this helps me when I am dealing with health professionals and therapists, as well as with other educators.

Join the engine of the new New Zealand

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